Aaron Blake of The Washington Post reports that the GOP is “primed to win six seats and take back the Senate,” which is pretty remarkable considering how many Americans think that party is anything but grand these days.
According to a Washington Post-ABC poll, nearly half of all Americans “strongly” disapprove of GOP members in Congress, and their total negative rating is 72%.
So how is it Republicans are sitting pretty for November?
For starters—according to the Washington Post-ABC News poll—only 25% of Americans think it would be a “bad thing” for the GOP to take over the Senate. Another 32% say the switch would be a “good thing,” and more than half (51%) pretty much just shrug it off. Heck, less than half of Democrats (48%) look down on the idea of a GOP-controlled Senate.
“The GOP certainly has its problems, but in a lot of ways, disgust with the GOP is like disgust with Congress,” Blake wrote. “While people hate Congress, they are much more likely to hold a favorable view of their own member of it. And if a Republican candidate can run a good campaign and avoid being too closely associated with the less-savory elements of his or her national party, that ‘R’ next to his or her name isn't really much of a burden.”
FiveThirtyEight calculates that the Republicans have a 58% probability of regaining control of the Senate, with the battle most likely hinging on races in Iowa, Kansas, North Carolina, Colorado, Alaska, Arkansas and Georgia.
As for the House of Representatives, in 2012 Republicans achieved the rare feat of losing the popular vote, but winning a majority of the seats.
Despite the fact that 1.4 million more voters chose Democratic candidates over Republican ones, redistricting and gerrymandering gave the Republican Party a 33-seat advantage. There is no reason to believe that the 2014 results will be any different.
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky